Several people suffer from extreme moods of happiness and sadness. Sometimes all they need is an ice cream a good cry or some jazzy music to lighten their mood. Other times, however, cases are more severe and therefore not easy to determine or treat. Bipolar disorder can be caused by chemical imbalance. This mood disorder can be difficult to diagnose because of its vague and common symptoms. How do you know whether your moodiness is a normal reaction to life or the sign of a serious medical disorder? Before you head for the common manic depression disorders, make sure you fully understand the facts on these illnesses. |
Depression symptoms include a lack of interest in things that once brought pleasure, constant feelings of sadness and emptiness, and an inability to get things done. Bipolar disorder has all of the symptoms of depression as well as a mood swing called mania; people with bipolar disorder can cycle back and forth between the two states.
Mania is a pathologically elevated mood and can create feelings of euphoria, omnipotence, or hyperactive arousal that are caused by an imbalance of neurological chemicals. People with mania may experience intense exhilaration and other seemingly good feelings, but mania can also manifest as agitation, scattered thoughts, and feelings of extreme emotional unease.
Bipolar disorder shares a range of other symptoms, including psychosis (a break with reality that can be characterized by hallucinations and distorted thoughts), irritation and anger, problems with attention and concentration, and anxiety. These symptoms are often misinterpreted as signs of other illnesses or personality defects, and therefore, a serious mood disorder is often misdiagnosed or brushed off. People with undiagnosed mood disorders often mistake their illness for a flaw in their character, and can spend years desperately trying to cure themselves instead of seeking psychiatric evaluation for an illness.
Depression and bipolar disorder are somewhat easy to diagnose once they are taken seriously. Although a trained professional must make a proper diagnosis, there are some clues that may help you determine if your moodiness is a sign of a serious illness:
One common effect of the disorder include thoughts of suicide. This is common among those suffering from serious depression. Whether action-oriented, or passive, suicidal thoughts are always a sign that a person’s brain chemistry is not functioning properly, and that professional help is needed.
In addition, if a person who has been depressed suddenly feels the cloud lift, it is natural to think that the depression has ended and that the person is finally normal. However, for people with bipolar disorder, this is often the first stage of an unnatural, escalating mood swing in the opposite direction. Mania often feels good at first, which makes it difficult for people to recognize. Unfortunately, feelings of euphoria or agitation can continue to intensify until the person no longer makes sense. • Do you go through periods of extreme
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